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*******ARRANGING FOR MILK FOR GOGA***********

*******ARRANGING FOR MILK FOR GOGA***********
Goga was crazy about milk and milk products. Though he was crazy about everything but his craze for milk surpassed all his crazes. All his talk centered around having dhoodh, dahi, lassi, burfee. Once he said “ Yar sadi mummy majh kyon nayeen ban jandi (Pal, Why doesn’t our mother become a buffalo?)
Why? I asked
“Asi fer roz dudh piya karange” (Then we will drink milk everyday)
I didn’t have an answer to it.
“Hmmmm.”, he thought for a while and said, “There is only one way in which it can be achieved.”
“What?” I said
“But it has to be a secret”, he continued.
“I am your friend, I will do anything to help you.”
“I am your friend , I will do anything to help you.”
“We have to go to the jungle and leave the request with the “Chudail” ( Female Ghost) to do it for us”.
This was getting serious and somewhat dangerous too.
“Chudail can catch us and kill us,” he added
I weighed his proposal but promised to accompany him. The matter was dropped for the time being.
There was one doctor Sooraj Prakash, who had a small shop in the bazaar of the suburb “Upper Kaithu” where we lived. He had a pair of Golden retrievers, look alike. They had remarkably retained the appearance they got from the respectable pedigree, despite it having been diluted by the strays, a few generations down the line.
But they were very docile. Though Dr. Sooraj Parkash was only and RMP, but he was the best that was available to whole of Upper Kaithu, including the Jawans in Police Lines. Dr. Sooraj Prakash was the designated doctor (sans designation) for the police lines. also doubled up as a doctor for the police lines which was adjacent to our quarters. He used to come for his daily morning and evening rounds to the Police Lines.
His dogs accompanied him wherever he went. It was an evening time and Sooraj Prakash must have come for his evening rounds to the police lines. The female of the pair named Rosie lay resting near us. Goga got up and went near her. He patted and caressed her. She was too pleased by the sudden showering of love on her and she turned and lied supine exposing a row of her nipples. Goga pressed one. A bead of some whitish fluid came out.
He picked it with his finger, tasted it, and said, “Tastes good but she doesn’t have enough”.
I don’t remember what happened next but I think Rosie took that remark very seriously. She took it upon herself to do something to increase her milk production. The next day or some days thereafter, I found Rosie joined to her mate Ginger, tail to tail. I asked my mother why they were joined like that. She said someone has glued their tales together. I felt very sad for them but didn’t know what I could do.
It snowed heavily that night. When I got up in the morning I saw all that came to my view covered with a thick blanket of snow. I saw out there at a flat patch of land adjoining the jail wall Rosie and Ginger still joined at the tails. I saw a policeman hurl a stone at them. They moved away but couldn’t separate. I don’t know how and when they separated but I am sure I asked my mother many questions that day and she answered all those without batting an eyelid or giving doubt a chance to take root in me. That’s what good mothers are good at.
After winter, one day we set out on our mission of turning his mother into a buffalo ( English has no gender variant, in Spanish it is buffala and in Hindi it is Bhains for she buffalo(cow) and Bhainsa for the bull. In Punjabi female is called Majh and male is called Bhainsa or Jhota but Jhota is a young adult bull.)
He wrote his request on a piece of paper
“Meri mummy ko bhains bana do” ( Turn my mother into a buffalo)
We went deep in the woods. In those days they weren’t hard to find especially in the hills.
We became very scared as the distance between us and the habitation increased. Though it was the daytime, but deep in the forest, it was gloomy and scary. The wind roared and the branches swayed and crackled producing frightening sounds. We saw big bones or things that looked like them. Goga said they were the bones of ‘Chudails’ because human beings don’t have such big bones.
We saw a clearing and something that looked like an old grave. Goga placed his paper on that and placed a piece of rock on it. Some metallic door groaned (in those days public toilets in Shimla were corrugated G.I. sheets and I am sure they must be the same still, neither cleaned nor repaired) on its rusty hinges somewhere and we ran homewards. Some sharp object pierced my foot and I let out a cry. Goga came to help me as I held my foot. I saw blood oozing out. Goga said that Chudail’s bone had pierced my foot and it won’t heal if I told anyone about it.
I removed my chappals and held them in my hand and we both ran till we could see some signs of life around. I washed my bloodied foot at a small brook. My foot became infected but I didn’t tell anyone about my wound but my mother saw my infected wound and noticed my limp. She took me to the dispensary. The doctor said that it will have to be slit, to remove the lodged splinter and to drain the pus. He asked me where I had got hurt. I had to tell the truth because I was in deep pain and was afraid of the incision. I also disclosed the purpose of our adventure. My mother blushed red but smiled nevertheless and the doctor laughed. Because I divulged the secret, Goga’s mother never became a buffalo. He had to make do with whatever milk and lassi he was given by his parents.

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Navneet Bakshi

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Ushasurya
Ushasurya
1 year ago

Today..no innocence or mischief….sad!!!

Prasad Ganti
Prasad Ganti
1 year ago

Navneet sahib, well written story of innocence !

Jayashree T.Rao
Jayashree T.Rao
1 year ago
Reply to  Prasad Ganti

Thanks Prasad Ji- Those were the days of carefree life and innocence was the license to mischief

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